Our 10th country – Hungary

Thursday, 14th June 2018

Dave posting,

A small amount of planning for today took place over breakfast here in Osijek, Croatia.

Hungary will be the 10th country we have visited on this tour. As we travelled northwards through Croatia to the Udvar border crossing, we need to spend our last bit of cash – 225 kuna’s before entering Hungary, so we will top up our LPG refillable system and buy diesel with the remaining kuna’s in Croatia. Continue reading

Hot, hot, hot!!!

Tuesday 12th June 2018

Dave posting,

Blinking eck, Cathy is up at 6am, it’s really cool and almost acceptable for us Brits! After Mrs E has drank her obligatory second cup of tea and plotting our route we quietly, ever so quietly left the free fortress car park and our friends, Jeanne & Tai, until next guys bye for now!

Osijek in Croatia is our destination; an hour later and we are at another border crossing at Backa Palanka, Serbia, although this time it was very straightforward with no waiting or problems. On the other side of the bridge we turned right and headed to the Hotel Danav near Ilok for a break. This part of north-east Croatia is surrounded by Serbia on three sides. We are so close to the border that our phones don’t recognise we are in a different country, which is a shame as our mobile contracts allow data useage in Croatia.

We rest here for a while, it’s very hot today. I suggest a coffee in the shade, hopefully there might be a breeze off the river and maybe we could take advantage of the hotels free wi-fi, well why not? loaded up with all our electronic devices we find a table and chairs with a view of the river and a power point! I did ask before plugging ourselves in! Two coffees and two glasses of water arrive and we read, write and research. The hours slip by and we become peckish, let’s have lunch here, it’s a pleasant spot, not busy and we can justify the cost as we intend to free camp here tonight.


Free car park at the side of the Danube, Ilok, Croatia


Looking at the border bridge and Serbia


Coffee break i n the shade but it’s still 29c

We decide to move on and not stay here, nothing wrong with the location, we just wanted to get to Osijek, we set off at 3pm, maybe it was a mistake not to stay here, we are driving in to the sun and the heat intensifies as we travelled, Cathy was melting, we can’t believe it’s 37 in the van, the air con can’t cope, the air outside is hotter than inside, so there’s no point opening any windows. We pull over for fuel and a chilled drink from the garage, Cathy is not feeling well and we needed to stop. We can’t contain our excitement at spotting a LIDL, another reason to stop, shop and cool down! we love Lidl!


In the cab, how hot is it ??? unbelievable!!!

The forecast is 95-99% humidity, we are eager to get to Osijek, get out of our very hot van, set up camp & cool down at another free spot by the river. The car park is huge, it’s almost deserted, no signs about payment or restrictions, park where you want kind of thing, there’s plenty of grassy areas, it’s part tarmac, part cobbles, level and thankfully there’s lots of shade from the large number of trees.


Osijek parking

Now it’s 10pm and it is still hot at 28 at this time of night! it is such a still evening. We are tired, a little frazzled and we can’t be bothered to eat, so we lie down on the bed and try to relax in the heat. The nearby fairground is pumping out music in to the still night. We are restless, suddenly at midnight the wind appears from nowhere blowing cool air through the trees, we lie there with the windows fully open enjoying the coolness, it feels so much better now! A storm quickly follows and as the temperature drops we fall asleep.




Italian Toll Roads!

Sunday 15th April 2018

Dave posting,

Light rain woke us this morning, it’s 8am, the kettle is on for the first cuppa of the day. We are thinking about Venice and going there, so a small amount of research in to places to park and visit, we use numerous resources, A Life In The Slow Lane, Our Bumble, Our Tour, Charlie the Chucklebus.

Time is creeping up on us and now we have to get ready to move off before 11.30am (Camping Sirmione) as is the sites rule, the bill for 3 nights on the superior pitch was €96.60, although expensive it’s definitely worth the money in our opinion, it was like a mini holiday in the tour.

We drove towards Pescheria and spotted a LIDL, in we go and buy groceries. We stay put and switch the wifi/mifi on, more Venice researching over crackers and humous. We don’t want to get a train or bus in to Venice, we want to “arrive” in a water bus, vapourette, so we decide on a plan. The plan involves stopping in the NE area of Venice and catching a water bus, but we need a cheap overnight stop tonight.

Using Search for Sites we found a free Sosta at Treviso, a quick read of the Sosta reviews in Search For Sites and we are heading there now. The coordinates say nearly 3 hours journey, so I re-format the sat nav to include tolls and motorways and now it’s only 1hr 45 mins via the A4 motorway.

A few minutes later we leave the LIDL car park and in 3 kms we roll up to the ticket machine at the start of the toll motorway, ticket issued, and we are on our way for 140 kms of motorway driving.

The weather changes to rain, the motorway is a decent drive with good road surfaces compared to the toll-free roads that run parallel to the toll roads and no lorries at all. (I think that in some European countries HGV movement is not allowed on Saturdays and Sundays).

The strange thing over here is there are no signs or information about toll road costs, or distances or towns, you just get on and worry about the euros when you exit!

radio aux

Listening to The Eagles and Foreigner albums & 90 minutes later we are coming down the exit slip road to the toll booths, we stop and put the ticket in, well we first of all I have to stand up in the footwell to reach the machine, it asks for €11.50, that’s cheap! well what a pavlava, I tried my pre-paid MasterCard three times, I tried cash but the machine wouldn’t accept notes, and now the remote ticket machine operator is telling me what to do in Italian through a loudspeaker. Mastercard, credit card, visa card, he says, I said “I am trying it but it’s not accepting it!”

This goes on maybe five times, suddenly a receipt is printed, and the barrier raises, off we go then grabbing the receipt. A minute late Cathy says the receipt value is zero, but our Reg. No. is on the receipt. We continue for a few minutes when a police car appears out of nowhere, sirens on and flashing lights, Cathy says “they are coming after us Dave!” as they drove by quickly.

Pulled up in Treviso at the Sosta, it’s attached to a huge car park which is very full for 6pm on a Sunday night. Selected a spot and put the kettle on, it feels ok with 5 other motorhomes here. There are 3 other motorhomes in the corner that look they have been here a while. The police patrol car drove around a couple of times in the evening before 11pm, it’s an okay spot, earplugs in to soften the noise of the noisy rail track 250 metres away.


I’d never be able to get in that!

Treviso is by all means a lovely place to visit but we just wanted to sleep, Venice awaits and we’re excited.